We’ve made it to the final region of the All-Time Favorite Cincinnati Bearcat Basketball Player Tournament and it is named for current head coach Mick Cronin, who will remain at that post for the foreseeable future. A number of Cronin’s players have already been featured in this tournament, but his best, Sean Kilpatrick, leads this region. This is also the only portion of the bracket with any current players. I’m sure you’ll figure out who. Take a look at the region to find out.
And now let’s dive a little deeper so you can make informed decisions.
No. 1 Sean Kilpatrick vs. No. 16 Eddie Lee
The most recent Bearcat to be named an All-American, Kilpatrick is now playing professionally for the Brooklyn Nets. He is one of the next in line to have his number retired, assuming the Bearcats will continue the tradition and have someone join Kenyon Martin, Oscar Robertson and Jack Twyman. Lee had a great senior year in 1979-80 and is a member of the 1,000 point club.
No. 8 Dion Dixon vs. No. 9 Levertis Robinson
Dixon was a big-time producer in the loaded backcourt for the 2012 Sweet 16 team. He averaged 13 points per game while playing with Kilpatrick, Cashmere Wright and Jaquon Parker. He and Kilpatrick set a program record with 37 games started that year. Robinson helped usher in a new era of Cincinnati basketball, playing from 1988-91 and scoring 1,320 points during his career.
No. 4 Pat Cummings vs. No. 13 Connie Dierking
Cummings was a standout during the late 70s and a back-to-back All-Metro selection in 1978 and 1979, scoring the POTY honor in the latter. With 1,762 points for his career, he ranks seventh in scoring at UC. Dierking played with Oscar Robertson and was one the Big O’s best teammates, ranking eighth in all-time rebounds and earning the team’s 1957 MVP award.
No. 5 Pete Mickeal vs. No. 12 Tom Thacker
Mickeal was Kenyon Martin’s right-hand man, as the duo dominated the floor for the Bearcats in the late 90s. Named the team’s MVP in 1999, Mickeal averaged 14.2 points, 6.8 rebounds and 1.5 steals per game during his two seasons. Thacker was an All-American and a member of both of the program’s national championship teams.
No. 2 Steve Logan vs. No. 15 Tony Yates
In 2002, Logan was chosen as an All-American. He was also named the Conference USA Player of the Year for the second-straight season and accumulated enough points to rank second in all-time scoring at UC (Kilpatrick would later pass him). To say he was successful as a Bearcat would be an understatement of the highest order. Yates is a two-time national champion who got some All-American love himself.
No. 7 Herb Jones vs. No. 10 Gary Clark
Over the course of two seasons, Jones racked up 1,097 points as well as second and first-team all-conference honors, both from the Metro in 1991 and the Great Midwest in 1992. Gary Clark is a problem.
No. 3 Jason Maxiell vs. No. 14 Robert Miller
Maxiell broke in as a terrific sub, winning Sixth Man of the Year honors from C-USA in 2002 as a freshman, and then continued to be a consistent threat in the paint for three more years. He led the Bearcats in blocks from 2003-2005 and went on to have a solid career in the NBA. Miller got himself on the All-Metro first-team in 1977, but fell to the second team in 1978. Still, he finished 14th in scoring at UC behind ... Jason Maxiell.
No. 6 Deonta Vaughn vs. No. 11 Art Long
Fourth in all-time scoring for the Bearcats, Vaughn was one of the first players to succeed under Cronin. He scored in double figures in all four seasons of his career, including a personal best of 17.3 during the 2007-08 campaign. In addition, his 511 assists were the most ever by a Bearcat until Troy Caupain broke the record earlier this year. Long topped UC in blocks and rebounds during the 1994-95 season and was named the 1995 Newcomer of the Year in the Great Midwest.